Yesterday, we looked answered the question: “How much should a boxer puppy cost?” Today, we are going to answer the question, “How can you tell if a boxer puppy is purebred?”
Most people who are willing to spend a significant amount of money buying a boxer puppy, will want to be sure that they are getting a purebred boxer. purebred dogs are those which have been bred carefully through generations. With careful breeding practices, full blooded puppies are going to have the “look” and characteristics that are consistent with the breed.
The greatest benefit of a purebred dog is that there is very little room for guesswork when it comes to what to expect from your puppy as the weeks, months and years pass. You buy it as a puppy and you know that it is going to have the characteristics you are looking for when the dog matures and grows up. You will be sure of the dog’s abilities and limitations in terms of character, personality and temperament.
You may be looking to add a boxer to your family because one or more of the following reasons:
- a hunting partner
- a search and rescue dog
- a herding dog
- a basic companion dog
Or, maybe you’re interested in a boxer dog because you have been told that a boxer will be gentle with the kids and other pets (for a complete overview of the breed, check out our Boxer Breed Information page).
The truth is, if you have selected a boxer due to any or all of these characteristics, you need to select a purebred boxer. If a dog is not purebred, it will still make a wonderful companion, but the characteristics of that dog, will end up being a mix of a boxer and whatever the other breed is. Therefore, the expected characteristics are less accurate.
The good news is that you can easily tell if your puppies are full blooded boxer puppies before buying them. While you may want to go hi-tech and ask for a DNA testing to be sure of its genealogy, there are other simpler ways of finding out whether or not it is a full blooded dog. The simplest way of knowing is to ask for the papers from the breeder. The papers include a heritage or “family tree” tracing the dog’s bloodlines.
A simpler and quicker check that you can do to try and determine whether or not the puppy is a purebred boxer is to take a look at the puppy’s physical features. Use the points below as a guide.
The Coat: The puppy will typically have a short and shiny coat with colors ranging from mahogany, light tan, white markings and black stripes. There are people who believe that if the puppy’s white markings cover more than one third of the body, you need to be cautious about it. However, there have been plenty of white boxers who have lived long and healthy lives.
Body Build: A normal full blooded boxer puppy will most likely be lean with lots of loose skin that it will grow into. The puppy should have a well built head that is fairly relative to the body. It should have a flat muzzle that covers approximately one third of its head. A purebred boxer puppy will have an unmistakeable “cone head” early which will eventually flatten out as it matures.
The Ears: Check to see that the dog’s ears are thin and rise when it is alert. The ears but where it has not been done, the ears will actually fall over the cheeks and check to be sure that those ears are projecting from to top most point of the dog’s skull.
Cropped ears are an extremely controversial subject which is not the topic of this article, but just be aware that in some cases, if the puppy has reached 10-12 weeks old, the breeder may have “cropped” the ears which will make the ears stand straight up and pointed.
The Legs: The dog’s front quarters normally possess straight shoulders that are long and muscular with forelegs that appear to be slanted. The hindquarters are made of curvy thighs with rear legs that look angular.
The Tail: In North America, a boxer puppy typically has a short tail that has been docked shortly after birth. However, there has been movement in other areas of the world, to make tail docking illegal such as the UK and Australia.
Boxers have a very specific look and it is usually quite easy to tell if a boxer is purebred or a cross but the best way to ensure that you are getting a purebred boxer, is to deal with a reputable breeder or your local Boxer Rescue Organization.
Next up: What Do I Need to Buy for My Boxer Puppy?